Systems maintenance; learn here all about its 3 levels

Do you work in systems maintenance? If so, you will probably have a lot of work. Information technology is becoming increasingly important, both for individuals and businesses. This might come as no surprise, of course; but if you are not working in the sector, you may not know the extent to which computer maintenance is increasingly being used, especially in the business world.

For many businesses, IT is essential, to the point of becoming dependent on it. And companies that have this dependence on IT (which is a large part of the existing ones) have been realising for years that investment in IT maintenance can lead to savings in both the medium and long term.

In order to better understand what systems maintenance tasks consist of, one of the approaches we can make is to divide them into levels or types. But be careful, because these are two different things.

What are systems maintenance levels?

When it comes to levels of systems maintenance, we are talking about distinguishing maintenance tasks according to the elements of the computer system on which the work is to be carried out. In this sense, it is important to differentiate them from the types of maintenance, which refer to the different times at which maintenance tasks are carried out.

Thus, we will see different levels (hardware, software and documentation), types (predictive, preventive, corrective and evolutionary). However, we must remember that these are classifications that we make with the sole purpose of better understanding the type of tasks that are being carried out. In practice, they will constantly overlap (for example, corrective software maintenance or preventive hardware maintenance may be carried out).

In this article we will talk about the levels of computer maintenance. Keep in mind that they often involve multiple tasks, often of great technical complexity, so the following is only a very schematic summary.

3 levels of systems maintenance

– Hardware maintenance

This is the set of tasks that try to ensure the proper functioning of the physical components of the system (computers, peripherals, etc.).

Everyone lives in a physical world (computer systems too) where we are exposed to all kinds of damage. In particular, factors such as excessive heat, dust, the simple passage of time or even some accidents can damage the components of computer equipment, causing it to malfunction.

Thus, hardware maintenance work will try to both prevent this type of problem and solve it when it occurs.

Among the tasks that are intended to avoid sources of problems are, for example, equipment cleaning. This activity, which is carried out mainly on the inside, can become very important to avoid frequent and important problems, such as those caused by overheating.

But it is not the only one; although sometimes we do not stop to think about it too much, another activity of computer maintenance is the correct location of the equipment, which avoids exposing it to harmful environments, such as the sun, heat, dirt, humidity, etc., which could cause damage to its components.

Or we also find tasks to check the extent to which the systems are strong enough to withstand extreme conditions, in order to prevent potential problems. For example, if server maintenance is carried out, a test can be performed to verify what temperatures the servers can tolerate without suffering a drop in performance.

In addition, as we have already mentioned, certain tasks, such as repairing breakdowns or replacing components, also fall within this category, as they try to solve problems that have already arisen or prevent them from escalating or arising in the future.

– Software Maintenance

Software maintenance tries to guarantee the correct functioning of the software in the system and the integrity of the data stored in it.

Is that too little or too much? The truth is that this is an almost uncountable set of tasks, covering such tasks as controlling commercial software licenses, maintaining databases, configuring and updating the operating system and software used by the computers, protecting against malware, or detecting and cleaning it if it is already on the systems.

– Maintenance of documentation

Less well known to the general public, this is a very important set of activities for professionals.

Computer systems are dynamic, change over time, and are used by different people throughout their lives. The documentation of a computer system will therefore be essential, as it will serve as a “guide” for the professionals who work with it.

The documentation work of a computer system will be responsible for gathering information about the characteristics, both technical and operational, of the components that are part of the system in general. On the other hand, the maintenance of documentation will ensure that it is updated and available for use when necessary.

Do you want to see some examples? Tasks such as adding user manuals for new software that has been installed or registering the maintenance tasks that have been performed will be part of the documentation maintenance work.

Not only that, but the documentation will also allow tasks such as those linked to the audit, and even facilitate the use of the systems by their users.

These are 3 levels of systems maintenance and a very brief description of each one of them. If you’re in computer maintenance, you’ll certainly know what they are. You probably also know how useful monitoring software can be when carrying out an important part of your work. And you may even know Pandora FMS.

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